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Church History

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"Someone once noted that history was 'simply one thing after another.' However, for the Christian history represents an amazing story of the redemption of mankind in which our sovereign Lord is seen to be advancing His purposes towards His pre-ordained and pre-determined end. For the modern day believer, this study is crucial for understanding what God is doing in our day."

Label / Recorded by Denton Bible Church


Reviewer: jesse100 - - May 1, 2015
Subject: Fascinating Series
This is a fascinating review of church history and for a Pastor to have been able to do this on Sunday mornings is truly commendable. It must be said that this is definitely a commentary on church history from a very particular perspective (Calvinist). If you are not a Calvinist you will probably be a bit taken back by some of the negative comments made at times and some of his conclusions about more modern era Christianity. He can romanticize the church fathers and then tear apart more modern movements and leaders (like Finney).
Reviewer: nshode - - October 2, 2012
Subject: Mixed review
I have listened to and read various sources on church history. Mr. Nelson's lectures were given to his church. Therefore, I would expect him to be biased in his presentation as to his theological beliefs. I believe he is quite unfair to the Wesleyan/Arminian movement that ultimately resulted in the Holiness and Pentecostal movements. That is why I wouldn't pay much attention to him on these issues. They don't present an accurate picture of these movements. However, I did learn quite a bit about areas that are more in accord with Mr. Nelson's theology. I actually learned additional material that wasn't covered in many lectures on church history.
Reviewer: AZTroy - - September 22, 2011
Subject: Excellent, informative and entertaining
Tommy Nelson is very engaging and informative. The reviews below with debates require the listener to do a little research on their own--and all who really want to know truth should. Many will learn a great deal and will be prompted to study more--and that is a very good thing. Thank you for making this available--and for free! I also wrote Denton Bible church for the notes which they gladly supplied free of charge as well (in .pdf form)!
Reviewer: follower248 - - September 20, 2011
Subject: good stuff
I listened to the whole series and found it to be very helpful and informative. My spirit has been blessed to see the hand of Almighty God working through sinners and saints alike to bring about His soverign purposes, and to preserve his truth, while my intelect is challenged to learn more. I strongly recommend this study regardless of denomination.
Reviewer: ChrisLB - - July 15, 2009
Subject: A good start
I agree with most of Quixie's comments. For example, Nelson STRONGLY resents how the Holiness movement seems to set itself up as a "church within a church," yet he doesn't seem to see that Evangelicalism did the same thing within the worldwide church. Nelson also makes this off-the-wall statement that Christianity always moved west throughout history, until it finally came all the way around to China with the modern missionary movement.
Most Evangelicals will see that Quixie's recommended authors (Bauer and Ehrman) are biased to the other extreme- they essentially teach that today's version of "orthodoxy" is merely the belief system of that group of early Christians who defeated all of the other varying Christian sects.
All in all, Nelson's lectures are a good place to start, for someone just getting into church history. For further, more academic treatments I highly recommend free church history lectures at and On these websites, you can listen to lectures from Beeson Divinity School and Gordon-Conwell (on biblical training's site) and Covenant Seminary (on covenant's site).
Reviewer: Quixie - - June 8, 2009
Subject: starts off really badly but picks up . . .
I agree with the gentleman who pointed out the obvious bias in his approach, but I would also add that the very first chapter (dealing with the period from 70 to 312) is pregnant with misinformation, misinterpretation and even falsehood. It reveals someone who has not payed any attention to the advance in our understanding of the history of the period over the last couple of hundred years could make such misinformed statements as "during that period, everyone believed the same thing." All it would take is the slightest acquaintance with the early writers (which, of course, the lecturer knows that his audience is not likely to ever read) to establish his erroneous suggestion: Tertullian, Origen, Justin, Marcion, the author of John 1 & 2, the author of the Apocalypse, Valentinus, all of which wrote during the period in question, show endless divisions and even different "varieties" of Christianities evolving on parallel tracks. This variagation has been the focus of such works as Walter Bauer's "Orthodoxy and Heresy in Earliest Christianity" (a seminal work) and the more recent "Lost Christienities" of Bart Ehrman, along with many others.
Still, I did listen to the whole series, and I found the WHOLE series to be fairly well outlined and somewhat useful and informative, notwithstanding his simplistic take on the earliest period, of course, which unfortunately happens to be the most important and formative (and interesting) period of all in the history of Christianity.
Reviewer: RevTed - - February 27, 2008
Subject: Good Story Telling with Minor Theological Bias
Tom Nelson is very articulate and presents his story well. His presentation is engaging as he takes the listener on a journey from the first through the twentieth century.

His presentation is not without theological bias which can be expected since he is presenting to his church congregation. He seems to get cynical when telling events associated with the Pentecostal Movement. He presents more as a teacher and less as a historian (which is OK).

Despite biases, this audio is certainly worth listening.
Reviewer: siminz - - January 7, 2008
Subject: Excellent!
Every Christian should listen to this fast moving and exciting journey through Church history.
Reviewer: Ruth2 - - January 1, 2008
Subject: Wow! What great information!
Thank you so much for having this. I'm a church go-er and never knew all this church history. I had no idea how we got our different churches. Tom Nelson explains it so clearly, and it's a real pleasure & privilege to learn! I like re-listening to it to catch every detail too.
Reviewer: sew_journer - - November 25, 2005
Subject: Worth the listen
Nelson keeps you interested with his delivery of pertinent facts of Church history. I had to listen a few times to keep up with the relevant and interesting connections throughout history in their unfolding of Christendom over the centuries
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